Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Waiting For The White Horse

Medium-good or slightly above average luck, waiting patiently afte preparing things diligently and in great detail: this fortune is just about right.

Two things today.

One, I have learned the value of not reading too quickly and then jumping to conclusions on comments when the commenter is someone who has offended you in the past. So chalk that up to two mistakes this month (the other was taking that stupid "this isn't actually a trail" trail up a mountain). Next time I'll read more carefully rather than seeing a commenter's name and assuming things.

Two, I was a part of a program that took students from one of the Big Four accounting firms to Longshan Temple today. The purpose was to train them in explaining interesting things about the temple to foreign visitors, so they'd have something to say in English about the things they already know in Chinese (plus some things they didn't know!).

During the program, the students practiced their English by going with me to draw a fortune stick. First you pray (apparently this is not strictly necessary, though), then you throw the fortune blocks (those crescent-moon shaped blocks) to ask the god if you may ask a question - if they land one side up, one side down, the answer is yes ("no" is two sides down, and "later" is two sides up - the god is laughing). You ask your question, and draw a stick. Then you throw again to see if it's the right stick (if not, you draw another). You take the stick to get a corresponding scroll with your fortune on it - the fortune is usually a poem, riddle or otherwise difficult to decipher message.

I got two "yes" answers and went to get my scroll, and ended up with 中吉, meaning "neutral luck", but my students said that it was not so much "neutral" as "medium good" - it was in the middle but still above average. I've had generally above average luck for most of my life, but not amazing luck (although I guess you could say that being born in the middle class of a developed nation in a peaceful region - even if the USA is not really a 'peaceful' country - to loving and supportive parents is amazing luck, which I guess it is from a global perspective). So...this made sense.

The little poem or message is something along the lines of preparing everything in great detail, and having the preparedness to deal with any problem. At that point, all one can do is "wait for the white horse to return in the sunset" or something along those lines.

So, slightly above average luck, you've prepared everything to the best of your ability, now calm down, be patient and wait.

I've been assured by my students that it's fine to post the fortune here, and even to admit what I asked for (it won't alter the fortune or render it invalid). So I can say here that I asked if my permanent residency application would go through.

Considering the headache I got preparing the documents, and the headache NIA gave me when they lost my records for 2007-2008 (and all I had to prepare to prove to them that I did, in fact, have an ARC at that time), this sounds just about right.

So...I just need to be patient. I've done all I can. It's been five weeks, though - I'm wondering when that white horse is ever going to show up.

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